Sony Playstation 3
Prince of Persia
The prince gets a reboot and boy is it a good one. The game takes all the great aspects of last generations Prince of Persia games, mixes it with some Assassinís Creed and the Playstation 2 classic Ico, and redoes the art style to give it a fresh new feel. The Prince of Persia series hasnít felt this fresh since Sand of Time was released and even then this new Prince does so many things better that this version of the prince may be the best one yet. Where Assassinís Creed might have taken a few missteps Prince of Persia gets it right delivering one of the most fantastic journeys in gaming this year.
Is a racing game still considered racing if the best part is the crashes? Even almost a year later, Burnout Paradise remains the best racing game of 2008, thanks in part to creating a beautiful, wide open world. The fact that Criterion continued to support the game throughout the year with FREE add-ons such as bikes and night-and-day cycles certainly helped the game as well. The cars crash beautifully, slowing the picture down showing windows crack and bumpers bend. The controls are perfect, not too tight but not too loose, and there is always something to do, whether itís offline or online. The fact that the game is even available on the Playstation Store means that there is absolutely no reason why you shouldnít have it.
How does Insomniac keep doing it? They consistently release high quality games on a time frame that some shovel-ware might even scoff at, they must truly never sleep over there. Resistance 2 continues the story of Nathan Hale but this time around the single player campaign may be its weakest link. Insomniac has implemented an entirely separate 8 player co-op mode as well as upped the number of players to an astounding 64 players in its already frantic multiplayer modes. What Insomniac did best though was that it forgot about trying to be a Halo killer and just made one hell of a console shooter that all fans of the genre will want to play.
Metal Gear Solid 4: Guns of the Patriots
The PS3ís killer app did not disappoint, thatís for sure, receiving a ten out of ten from this very website. The graphics are amazing and incredibly detailed, down to every texture. Though many thought it was impossible, most (if not all) of the loose ends story-wise were tied, and it will make you think about the rampant use of Private Military Corporations in todayís society. The game takes a page out of Gears of War in the controls department, easily for the better. The boss fights are truly epic, and every act provides you with something new to do, not to mention an ending thatís both emotional and well worth the 10 years since the original Metal Gear Solid. The audio, ranging from the great voice acting to the simply perfect orchestral score complete the experience. Metal Gear Solid 4 not only met the high expectations, but it knocked down the bar, stomped on it a couple of times, and then walked away.
If Metal Gear Solid 4 broke the bar, LittleBIGPlanet completely disintegrated the thing. Even without the option to create and download levels, LBP has some fantastic story areas and quite possibly a zillion unlockables. What makes LBP one of the best games of the year however, has to be the level creator. The thing is scary deep, but accessible thanks to some wonderful tutorials, and almost anyone can hop in and create their own little level to play with friends in. The physics are great, and everything, from the little Sackboy hop to grabbing blocks feels like it has real weight to it. Quite possibly the largest innovation in gaming of 2008, LittleBIGPlanet is a large step forward for user-generated content. Simply hop on sometime, look at the Little Big Colossus level and youíll quickly realize that things have changed. 2008 may very well have been the year of the Sack, but by the looks of it, so is 2009.